The Raven


Action / Comedy / Fantasy / Horror


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October 14, 2014 at 02:37 AM



Jack Nicholson as Rexford Bedlo
Boris Karloff as Dr. Scarabus
Vincent Price as Dr. Erasmus Craven
Peter Lorre as Dr. Adolphus Bedlo
1.23 GB
23.976 fps
1hr 26 min
P/S 4 / 12

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by The_Void 9 / 10

Pure Magic

This movie is loosely based around the famous Edgar Allen Poe poem of the same name. However, I don't think this is what the great literary genius had in mind when he originally wrote it; as Corman has turned the great Gothic poem into an absurd adventure styled comedy! Well, Edgar Allen Poe may be turning in his grave; but the rest of us get to have fun as we see horror gods Vincent Price, Boris Karloff and Peter Lorre, not to mention Jack Nicholson ham it up in style as the weird and wonderful cast of this absurd story of wizards and hocus pocus. Vincent Price is Dr. Erasmus Craven, and the film starts out with a reading of the famous Poe poem by the one and only Mr Price, and we're in familiar Corman-Poe territory. However, things take a turn in a totally different direction when, nearly napping, suddenly there comes a tapping, as someone gently rapping, rapping at Craven's chamber door. 'Tis a raven...or rather, Dr Bedlo (Peter Lorre), a fellow magician that has been turned into a raven by the rather nasty Dr Scarabus (Boris Karloff). After turning Bedlo back into a man, Craven is convinced by Bedlo, after hearing Scarabus has his beloved Lenore, to accompany him to his castle. And that is where the fun starts.

Peter Lorre and Vincent Price make a delicious comedy pairing; their two unique personalities blend together brilliantly and it's great to see these two legends on screen together. As mentioned, these two are joined by fellow legend; Boris Karloff. Karloff is a vastly underrated actor that has played lots of important characters and turned his hand to many different aspects of horror; comedy being one that he does well at also. Like the rest of the cast, he delivers his one-liners with the utmost skill and has many fine comedy moments. Not all of the jokes in the film work, but some parts of the film are laugh-out loud funny. Seeing Jack Nicholson in a film like this is rather bizarre when you consider what he has gone on to achieve, but his presence serves in giving it even more cult appeal. Although if you'd heard someone say that he would go on to achieve these things after only seeing him here, you'd probably think whoever told you was having a laugh...

Whether or not Corman should have turned 'The Raven' into a comedy is debatable. On one hand, I love the film, but I'm not sure if a serious version better would have been better. Still, the debate is irrelevant because he did and this is the result. The film is loyal to the poem in some ways (including the lovely wrap up), but basically; this is completely different. But pay the similarities and differences no mind, as 'enjoy!' is my advice.

Reviewed by telegonus 7 / 10

Party Time

The Corman-Matheson The Raven, a charming cultural artifact from the early sixties, played extremely well at kiddie matinees when first released, holds up less well for grownups when watching it on television. This is a movie that needs an audience, preferably young and not too sophisticated. Without the laughter of children it falls a little flat, but is still fun to look at, if only for the remarkable sets of Daniel Haller, the colorful costumes, the mugging actors.

This is not an adaptation of the Edgar Allan Poe poem (which would be impossible) but rather a spoof of the various movies adapted from Poe's stories that were so popular at the time it came out, featuring many of the same cast members! As such, the movie needs to be seen in this context or else it will make no sense.

Vincent Price, a good magician, helps Peter Lorre turn from raven back to human form, then journeys to the castle of bad magician Boris Karloff, who was responsible for changing Lorre into a bird, to engage in a battle of sorcerer's tricks. Jack Nicholson is on hand as Lorre's son, and the two have some funny scenes together. There's not much story here, but the look and feel of the film are what make it work, to the extent that it does, as it's really a showcase for the actors and set designers more than anything else. It's a lighthearted film from the start, with nary a frightening moment. Everyone's dressed up as if at a Halloween party, and the festive tone is sustained throughout.

Reviewed by Hal cagot 7 / 10

If you are expecting Poe.........

Sorry, if you are expecting a movie based on Poe's poem. Other than Vincent Price elucidating one line from the

poem and his wife being named Lenore, any other connections are coincidental. Yet, I'm sure you will find this movie entertaining and funny. An all star cast of Vincent Price,( the kind but powerful

hero), Peter Lorre, (a sniveling, shifty, weasel), and Karloff

at his diabolical best as the evil magician. It is sort of a

D&D version of the Good, Bad & the Ugly. Great special

effects for its time. A young ,soon to be Superstar Jack

Nicholson playing Peter Lorre's noble son does not really

add to the story, but it's fun to see him in his fledging days.

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